tv [untitled] September 20, 2011 3:00am-3:30am PDT
somebody out. >> mr. mayer. mayor lee: present. supervisor chiu: and eric mar is here as well. >> sorry, supervisor mar. mar present. supervisor chiu: thank you, madam clerk. ladies gentlemen, could you join me in the pledge of allegiance? >> i pledge allegiance to the flag of united states of america, to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. supervisor chiu: madam clerk, do you have any communications? >> i have no communications. supervisor chiu: could you call our to be a special order? >> the first item of business is for the mayor to engage with members of the board by answering eligible questions submitted by supervisors representing the i'd district. the mayor ray address the board initially for to 5 minutes.
the president will recognize the representatives from district 1, 3, 5, 7, and 11, who will present their questions to the mayor, and discussion shall not exceed five minutes per supervisor. supervisor chiu: thank you. mr. mayor, if you would like to address the board. mayor lee: thank you. welcome back from our break of earlier this year. i also want to welcome the public here as well. thank you for coming in to this new room that is just temporary. we will get back to the larger chambers, of course. in this question and answer period, you know we build some flexibility in to catch some unexpected things that might have occurred before we had a chance to review the questions. i wanted to address something that occurred in the last few weeks. there has been quite a bit of discussion in the press and also within departments about what is happening at pier 38.
as you know, that as a background site for about at least 21 new and starting technology companies, and it has been in the press reported, and i confirmed that the port had some very serious concerns about the structural -- the electrical circuitry on their. what we wanted to do was make sure that the commercial tenants there, particularly the small technology companies, had very dedicated team of people from the city verifying the conditions of the pier, so i wanted to let you know that we are paying very close attention to it. i have asked our office of economic and workforce development to work proactively to a couple of things. one is to work with the port and make sure our city agencies, including our fire marshal, department of building inspection, as well as the port stone harbor master, work together to confirm the conditions of that here -- pier.
we want to make sure that information flow is not calendar with different information perspective that might cause a lot of confusion. i have asked that a joint meeting with the tenants of pier 38 take place this friday with all of our various departments together in the same room with them to share the information of the most recent inspection of all the agencies and make sure that we confirm the findings of our fire marshal, our department of building inspection, as well as the port's harbor master so that they all know that the city is speaking with one voice relative to that condition. simultaneously, i have asked our office of economic and workforce development to proactively meet with all of the representatives of the businesses so that we have actively help them search for alternative sites, make sure that we are paying extra sensitivity to the way those sites have developed over the course of several years because they have been a very successful
site. it has been a synergy of firms comedic other, and they want to work together and be together in that setting for their innovation and for their startups, and there is serious money in the state in these companies as well. we wanted to take care of that simultaneously. i wanted to assure the board and the public that we are paying close attention to the tenants there. safety, of course, is the number one concern. after that, we want to pay attention to making sure that these firms have a place in sanford cisco, whether it continues at pier 38 or whether it is close by that we will find -- we already have sites identified, but we want to make sure they are conducive to the way these businesses operate. they need that degree of flexibility. i just want to let you know that we are on top of it for the sake of our city and at least 21 companies to our employee a great number of our work force today. i will begin with that.
-- 21 companies who are employing a great number of our work force today. supervisor chiu: what we acknowledge our colleague from district 1, supervisor mar? supervisor mar: thank you, and welcome to our cozy chambers here. health care access and equity has been a major issue for residents of my district and many other neighborhoods in the city. it offers the city a good opportunity to potentially improve health care options available to all san francisco residents. expansion could also result in a loss of a services to some of our most vulnerable citizens. six supervisors have publicly indicated that they will not support a cpmc deal that does not include a community benefits agreement acceptable to the various community coalitions that have been negotiating the cpmc for the past two years or even more. i understand there has been much progress, and thank you for engaging cpmc and other
stakeholders in the process, but there has been progress made toward strapping a development agreement, but a development agreement for legal reasons cannot contain some of the provisions are of most importance to the community, such as giving the community the ability to enforce whatever agreements are made in the development agreement. this is my basic question -- are you willing to require the cpmc enter into a community benefits agreement before the proposal is approved by the city? mayor lee: 94 that question. i want you to know that virtually every supervisor here who i have had a chance to meet on a one-on-one basis has raised the project in various forms. -- thank you for that question. i want you to know i am paying very close attention to the project. it has a very big impact for the city, not only for the health needs of the city, but also the physical impact, the transportation in fact, the community needs and have it has in outlining the neighborhood
divisions that it impacts where the proposed site is. i want to thank you for the question. i am happy to report that we have made good progress towards the community benefits goal that i laid out previously. we reached this point only after well over a year of discussion between and among the numerous stakeholders in this project. as you know, the stakeholders include more than just the cpmc staff. i understand and acknowledge that concerns have been raised from stakeholders around the project, but i also understand the tremendous benefits the project could bring in the form of jobs and the additional revenue that i could -- that it could bring in. to move the product forward in a manner consistent with the needs of san francisco residents and to make sure that the pluses of the project out weigh the minuses, i have proposed a set of community benefits relating to health care for the ndp, the future of st. luke's hospital,
affordable housing, workforce development, transit impacts, pedestrian and bicycle improvements. the extent of the project i have requested are very broad, and to that end, the enormity of the task for my staff is significant. we are making ourselves available to you. when discussions are completed, these community benefits will be incorporated into a development agreement, which is the city binding legal agreement with cpmc so the city can stand behind them and bring resources to bear in any action to enforce them. staff will work closely with the city attorney's office could draft a tight and enforceable agreement with strong remedies in case of default and clearer oversight and monitoring. i will make sure that the public
has ample time to review before the agreement comes up for our final approval. finally, i want to make clear that i have and continue to encourage the community coalitions and cpmc to sit down and talk to each other to address their mutual concerns. you are correct, supervisor, that there are topics that our office cannot get into, but i will encourage very strongly that cpmc make those direct contract -- contacts with the community. i believe this will make a better relationship going forward among cpmc, community stakeholders, and the city at large. supervisor mar: i will provide the next question, which is a run market street. a series of pilot projects around market street in the past few years have reduced muni delays and improve safety for people on walking and bicycle lanes. giving the successes and the
fact that most san francisco drivers already know to avoid the market street gridlock, do you support a trial version of private automobiles from market street downtown accepted across it and the implementation of additional pilot projects to significantly increase the priority and safety of people using public transit, bicycling, and walking on market street? specifically, what on the ground pilot projects should happen soon while long-term planning continues on san francisco was a most important transit, cycling, and walking street, and when would you expect these pilots to occur? >> thank you, board president, for this very comprehensive question. i have been very dedicated to work with you and supervisor kim and all the supervisors to make sure we revitalize mid- market and make sure that street is working for all of us in the city. i have been very supportive of finding ways to improve conditions for all users of san francisco streets. buses, streetcars, automobiles,
taxes, delivery vehicles, bicyclist, and pedestrians, including what we have already done to restrict vehicles from certain parts of market street, and i would be supportive of additional trials and pilots. over the last two years, we have initiated several changes that have been successful in improving conditions along market street. for example, the right turn trials that sixth and 10th streets have resulted in a 3% improvement in travel time on market street with no increases in travel time on mission street, and an increase in the volume of by syphilis on east down market street -- volume of bicyclist on east down market street -- volume of bicyclists on eastbound market street. due to the success of this pilot, these right turn
requirements remain permanent in march with virtually no opposition. there are a number of other trials being introduced to improve the condition of market street. they include improving loading options and times about market street. all-door transit boarding on market street to improve troubled times for a quarter of the city's transit system. a recent mta analysis shows that more than 50% of the public transit travel time delay on market street is due to those boarding times. new and expanded pedestrian and bicycle treatments. improving street markets at -- street markings and signs to improve safety, and make it clearer for all users of market street where the different types of transportation are supposed to go. improving crosswalk conditions to improve safety, especially along numbered streets,
particularly sixth street, and some key intersections north of market. i would also like to add that i would start on something you and i have worked together on last year, and that is to begin in mid-market ambassadors program, someone along the lines we did for third street and for mission bay, for the visitation valley and hunters point where we will work with our jobs now three program to introduce additional eyes and ears along mid-market for increased safety for everybody that uses that street. i am a big believer in pilot projects to try out different potential solutions and before any pilots, though, we need to get input from market street, multiple stakeholders. merchants, businesses, residents, drivers, delivery providers, hotels, restaurants in the area, public safety, pedestrians, bicycle advocates, taxi drivers, etc., to make sure
we are taking everyone's concerns into consideration. of course, all of this requires funding, and i am committed to working with the mta and with our county transportation authority and other partners in seeking the necessary funds to get this done. thank you for that question. supervisor mirkarimi: thank you. good afternoon. as a result of assembly bill 109, the state prisoner realignment act, san francisco is projected to receive $5.7 million from the state for fiscal year 2011-2012 to help accommodate approximately 700 additional criminal offenders. we know this plan commences literally in three weeks. adult probation chief still estimates funding does not cover the cost of san francisco's realignment plan. the key projects that the city will be up towards to about $3.5 million short of meeting local
realignment funding objectives. how do you propose to address this funding gap? >> thank you, supervisor, and thank you again for your leadership on reentry programs. i attended the first meeting earlier this year ended enjoy hearing the best ideas coming out from this. as you know, public safety realignment is yet another example of the state pushing responsibilities on to local governments and not providing adequate funding to support them. my office has worked closely with chief still. she is here today. he is director of our adult probation. all the members of the community correction partnerships to produce a plan to respond to this population of inmates that we will be receiving from the state. the plan includes funding for additional officers and new community assessment and service centers, health and social services as well as analytical
support to manage and monitor the program. we have also included $4.8 million in the sheriff's department budget to cover the cost of opening county jail 6 in san bruno, should the impact of the jail population be higher than expected than the state could estimate. since we know the recidivism rate of this population may be very high. now, of course, our hope and expectation is that we can provide the supervision and services to keep these individuals from the three offending -- from reoffending. i have complete confidence in the ability of chief still and her staff and the ability of the public safety department to effectively manage this transition period to the extent that we are successful in keeping individuals out of jail, we should realize the savings in the sheriff to budget. as for funding, i agree that there is likely a need for additional funding beyond the
$5.7 million provided by the state, supervisor. as you know, our fiscal year 2011-2012 budget included $15 million reserve for the state budget pact and $25 million general fund reserve. in addition, the half-cent sales tax restoration measure on our november ballot will bring in an additional $15 million to be split evenly between public safety and health and human services, should the voters approve it. these contingencies are available to us should we need them. however, there are a number of other known and potential state and budget legislation and have that my office is tracking. these include the $25 million payment to the state to insure the continuing existence of our redevelopment agency, cuts to child-care subsidies, adult day health centers, and potential changes to medical funding that
will impact our public health. we are also facing pending trigger cuts that will occur if the state does not meet its revenue targets as well as on known cuts for the committee on deficit reduction. we just -- we must be mindful of this and proceed with caution before we tap into our reserves. i have assured chief still and the sheriff that we will continue to monitor the impact of ab 109 and assess the need for additional funding once realignment takes effect. this will be a continuing review, but we must not lose sight of a larger budget picture and the continued fiscal challenges the our city faces. thank you for that question. supervisor chiu: our next question will be provided by our colleague from supervisor 7, supervisor elsbernd. supervisor elsbernd: thank you. over the last month, outside the building, there has been a great
deal of discussion on subway project, and i thought i would use by opportunity here, your opportunity in the next five minutes, to maybe move away from the cliches and one-liners of campaigns and share with us your thoughts on the central subway project. >> thank you for this very important question an extremely important project for the future of san francisco. i have always been a strong supporter of this project. many people forget that the third straight line and central subway project work product of extensive community feedback and planning. it is a promise to low-income communities of color that stretched back for decades. we made a commitment to create a world class, stated the our transportation link between neighborhoods in the southeast, downtown, and chinatown. the central subway project, when completed, will use clean, renewable energy to carry nearly 44,000 passengers daily
and serve as a vital transit link to underserved areas of our city that continue to grow and where 68% of households are without access to a car. combined with bt line, we estimate 65,000 trips a day and travel time reductions from 20 minutes 8 between chinatown and the call center station, all while creating 30,000 local jobs. we need to remember the big picture when we talk about the central subway project. phase one of the project was the third street light rail project, which unites the city's established civic, business, retail, and culture centers with it evers communities along the light rail line and encourage economic revitalization along the entire quarter. the third street light rail open with full revenue service in april 2007. phase two, the central subway
project operates at an extension of the light rail. our san francisco transportation authority identified the corridor with an extension of chinatown as a priority for the late 1980's. the need to better serve the chinatown neighborhood was further necessitated by the 1989 loma prieta earthquake. project has been fiscally reviewed for years by the federal transportation authority under the new starts program. it has a fully committed funding plan and enjoys broad, federal, regional, and local support, including from the obama administration and senators feinstein, boxer, and leader
pelosi here once opened, the light is projected to be the highest writer ship line in the city as it will serve the jobs housing quarter with the highest projected growth in the city, south of market, and the mission bay. first of your construction projects are nearly complete, and one of the largest -- a $230 million guideway tunnel contract is scheduled to begin later this month. by the way, it came in $13.2 million under the engineers estimates. now is the time to support the city's goal of enhancing our infrastructure system and building the need of capacity for our system. our mta will be submitting its final breath agreement request to the federal government before the end of this month, and we would be working diligently to finalize the details through the last months of this year. thank you very much. supervisor chiu: our next question will be provided by our
colleague from district 9, supervisor campos. supervisor campos: thank you very much. as you are aware, the comptroller's office recently released -- the controller's office recently released a plot -- a report outlining the fact that city departments overspend their budget by at least $40 million in fiscal year 2010- 2011. top city departments they used the most overtime account for about 97% of the city's total overtime, and those apartments are the sfmta, the fire department, police department, department of public health, share, public utilities commission, the airport, department of public works, emergency management, as well as the recreation and park apartments. in fact, the sfmta accounts for 42% of overtime overruns. recently, along with my colleague supervisor farrell, i
introduced legislation that requires departments come before the board of supervisors for approval of spending over their budget, that they have to come before the board and seek a supplemental appropriation. we also urge that the sfmta, which, as you know, their budget items are not subject to action by the board of supervisors for the mayor. our only choice is to support the overall budget. but we have urged the sfmta to develop and overtime spending plan, and they have advised us that they are in the process of doing that. the first part of my question is will you support this good government piece of legislation that supervisor farrell and i introduced? second, as we seek to improve service, what will you do to ensure the ridership of the mta
that the issue of over time will be addressed and we will not have the delays we have seen? mayor lee: thank you for sharing your concerns and making sure we pay attention to this because it is an extremely important consideration, particularly in these hard budget times. i share your concern regarding overtime costs and the practice of certain departments of exceeding their budget year after year. since i assumed office this january, i have demonstrated my commitment to fiscal discipline. our five-year financial plan, which i have proposed and you unanimously as a board adopted earlier this year, recommends controlling employee wage and benefit come across as a strategy to restore long-term fiscal balance, addressing extensive overtime costs is a key strategy. we must ensure that departments are using overtime only when absolutely necessary. excessive use of overtime must be brought under control through better management and monitoring and, if necessary,
legislative reform. however, i want to be sure that any changes we implement take into account the operational needs of the department and do not actually result in increased costs for the city or worse services for residents of san francisco. for example, from my conversations with chief white, i understand the fire department has carefully constructed staffing model that balances over time and straight time to provide 24-our coverage back of firehouses and saves money due to the high cost of health benefits associated with full- time permanent employees. in the case of our mta, as you point out, the department has face particular challenges i a controlling overtime costs in recent years. these costs overruns are in part due to certain work rules and staffing limitations, included in the labor agreement with the transit operators union.
with the passage of prop g last year, the mta has the ability to change those rules and take a bed of greater flexibility in staffing, including using more part-time muni drivers to reduce the need for overtime. i know the new director of our mta is singularly focused in making sfmta an efficient and effective organization, and i meet with him every week to monitor and discuss ways to meet the agency's performance. i support your push for an overtime reduction plan, and i will encourage director reiskin to begin drafting such a plan. i cannot take the risk of jeopardize our ability to protect public safety or respond to an emergency, so i look forward to discussing this legislation with you and continue to look for ways to address overtime costs, even with all the hissing.
supervisor chiu: our final question will be offered by our colleague from district 11, supervisor avalos. supervisor avalos: thank you. last year, the voters approved prop c, establishing your appearance before the board of supervisors to establish policy discussions, possibly of the board of supervisors would develop a format for merrill appearance in consultation with you, with your office. i actually think we have had some substantive discussions with -- not really discussions, but presentations. i think that the format was established at a time when we had a more civilized relationship on the board of supervisors, but just curious. i think we have degenerated this question time into a very scripted exchange between the board. we often are reading our statements or questions. the responses are red, and i wonder if you would consider a
more dynamic interchanged -- interchange, and i would be willing to work with board members to work have one of figuring that out. >> i am open to improving any process that might improve the process even more, indeed the public at a high level, and make sure you understand the process. i think one of the most important things besides answering is to make sure that people know how we're thinking because that is as important as the final decision, how we think and how we approach problem- solving appeared i want to thank you for having the discussion because it is important that our public understands the substance of what we're talking about. voters told us last year that they wanted the mayor to come to the board of supervisors once a month to engage in formal policy